This ingenious concept is part of Britt Ragsdale's "Duets" series. The Houston artist currently has her video work up at Fresh Arts in ''Playback'', a show curated by Paul Middendorf of galleryHOMELAND. In four screens, Ragsdale pulls inspiration from familiar scenes out of classic films such as An Affair to Remember and Giant -- couples gazing longingly into each others' eyes, about to kiss, in a dramatic embrace. The videos are even in black and white, some softened to give it that dated, classic look.
Ragsdale uses real couples to copy these poses -- fleeting moments that the artist has stretched out into six, seven, eight, even 12 minutes. What's meant to be a romantic gesture soon becomes less-than-intimate, even pained, due to what Ragsdale describes as "intense scrutiny."
See "Britt Ragsdale: Playback" Mondays through Fridays by appointment. Through July 12. 2101 Winter Street, Studio B11. For more information, call 713-868-1839 or visit www.fresharts.org. Free.
Mondays-Fridays. Starts: June 24. Continues through July 12, 2013